Computer Generated Imagery

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What Does Computer Generated Imagery Mean?

Computer generated imagery (CGI) is the usage of computer graphics for special effects in movies, printed, and electronic media.


The application tools involved CGI manipulate the environment and produce photorealistic images, which might be useful for the electronic and printed media. As CGI visuals are far cost-effective than traditional photographic ones in many cases, it is widely used and quite popular.

Techopedia Explains Computer Generated Imagery

Features of CGI:

  • CGI can be used to build a library of props, which can be reused if needed.
  • Without supplying the actual products, the highest quality room sets and illumination can be achieved.
  • Is one of the best and cost-effective methods when it comes to developing images and videos for electronic media like movies, video games, etc.
  • CGI is created with help of wireframe models. The properties like reflection, illumination can be assigned and modified to these wireframe models.
  • The quality of the visual effects is higher and more pronounced and controllable compared to physical ones.
  • Allows creation of images and effects which may not be feasible using other methods.
  • CGI is far safer than physical effects.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.